When Leeds United signed Rodrigo from Valencia for a club-record £26m fee last year, Marcelo Bielsa would no doubt have been hoping, indeed expecting, that the forward would make his mark in the Premier League.
The Spain international arrived at Elland Road off the back of some impressive campaigns in La Liga, where he rebuilt his career after an earlier spell in England with Bolton.
In fact, in the 220 games that he played for Los Che, he scored an impressive 59 times and provided another 41 assists, featuring consistently in competitions such as the Champions League and Europa League.
Rodrigo endured a difficult debut campaign at Elland Road, however, completing the full 90 minutes just four times in the Premier League, while also missing a number of games either through injury or a viral infection.
After being given the chance and trust of his manager to start in the opening game of this season against Manchester United, Rodrigo completely let his manager down with a woeful display, prompting Bielsa to hook him at half-time.
Writing in his post-match player ratings, Leeds Live‘s Beren Cross gave him a four, saying: “Had next to no impact on the game with or without the ball. Really struggled with picking up the right men when the hosts had the ball. Hooked at the break.”
It was no surprise that numerous Leeds fans on Twitter tore into the Spain international for his performance against Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side.
Given the fee for which he joined, it’s quite telling that CIES now have his market value down at a measly £6m – a reflection perhaps of his total lack of form, injury troubles and the fact that he will turn 31 in a few months’ time.
Victor Orta hasn’t got much wrong at Leeds since becoming the club’s transfer chief and has presided over some superb pieces of work in the market, signing the likes of Raphinha and Illan Meslier to name but a few.
However, Rodrigo is quickly becoming Orta’s biggest transfer blunder at Elland Road.
Meanwhile, Leeds must give this star a chance…